Queens MP Brian May admitted the auction which sold more than 1,400 of Freddie Mercury’s personal items was “too sad” to think about.
The auction, held at Sotheby’s earlier this week (September 6), saw handwritten lyrics to some of the Queen’s most famous songs, jewelry worn by Mercury and her art collection up for auction.
The top item at auction was the Mercury piano used to compose the hit song “Bohemian Rhapsody”, a 1973 Yamaha Grand, which sold for £1.7 million. This figure surpassed that of John Lennon’s piano, which he used to compose “Imagine” in a previous auction.
Before the auction, May shared an old photo on Instagram of Mercury playing guitar.
He wrote: “When this photo was taken, I’m sure it wasn’t quite like seeing Freddie’s fingers dancing on my own homemade guitar. It now shows waves of affection and great memories. .”
He said of the auction afterwards: “Freddie’s closest personal effects, and the writings that have been part of what we shared for many years, will go under the hammer, to be taken down to the highest bidder and distributed. forever.
“I can’t watch. For us, his closest friends and his family, it’s too sad.”
Also up for auction at the Sotheby’s auction were other items from Mercury’s “exquisite clutter” collection, including 15 pages of song lyrics, including those from “Bohemian Rhapsody.” They were written on stationary from an out-of-business airline and revealed that the song was almost called “Mongolian Rhapsody,” but the singer crossed out the first word and replaced it with “Bohemian.”
The singer died in 1991 of AIDS pneumonia. He was 45 years old.
More items will be auctioned and the total proceeds are expected to be around £6 million.
Part of the proceeds of the auction will go to charity, and all proceeds from the sale of a Cartier onyx and diamond ring – given to Mercury by Elton John – for £273,000 will be donated to the singer Rocket Man’s AIDS charity.
Prior to the auction, the items were displayed in an exhibition entitled “Freddie Mercury: A World of His Own,” which attracted more than 140,000 visitors in just over a month.